12:53pm, this just in over VHF ch13:
Tug: “To the southbound Army Corps Of Engineers vessel.”
ACOE vessel responded (rather sure it was the Gelberman.)
Tug: “About a mile south of you, by Ellis Island, there’s a desk.”
ACOE: “A desk?
Tug: “Yes, a desk…and some telephone poles.”
ACOE: “OK, thank you.”
In front of the Colgate clock, I spy a raft towing a shattered houseboat. They are colorful, with scrappy sails on dubious masts, and I cannot make out if they are manned by crew, stuffed dummies, or–er–art. And, they say (on 13): “This is a raft, requesting miminum wake and safe passage.”
And, they get:
“You want safe passage, get a real boat.”
“Get out of the way!”
Undaunted, they motor on, and reach the Battery quickly.
Captain 1: “Uh, Mike, what the heck is that in front of you?”
Captain 2: “It’s…a pirate boat.”
Captain 1: (Laughing) “Hahaha, they all got life jackets on.”
Captain 2: “Yeah, I’d wear one, too!”
Captain 3: (in a raspy voice) “I want your booty.”
Captain 4: “Is the idea here to put garbage on the river to see if it floats?”
Raft: “There’s two rafts in front of you, in front of your starboard, requesting miminum wake and safe passage.”
Captain: “Get the hell out of our way!”
They make it past the Battery when at the World Financial ferry, two more assemblages go by. A police patrolboat has sort of stopped one.
In the meantime, the project is at http://www.switchbacksea.org/
They started out from Troy, NY, August 15, and will end the 3-week Hudson sail at Long Island City.
The NYTimes described it as “… part floating artwork, part performance, part mobile utopia and seemingly part summer camp for grown-up artsy kids.”
The flotilla is seven strong, all built of recycled motors and–things.
Well! welcome to our friendly harbor!